Disney fans are often dreamers, and when Disney announced a new park in Shanghai, legions of Disneyphiles started imagining what the new park would look like. Alain Littaye of the Disney and more blog has been dreaming, too, but he has also been watching Google Earth like a hawk. Thanks to Alain’s diligence, we are rewarded this week with an up-to-date bird’s eye view of Disney’s newest park and a little video that he calls Soarin’ Over Shanghai Disneyland. ~~Rick

First Google Aerial Photos of Shanghaî Disneyland plus
“Soarin’ Over Shanghaî Disneyland” Video
by Alain Littaye Disney and more blog

In what I am calling our first Disneyland Shangai Update, I have the first Google aerial pictures of the construction site plus a “soaring’ over Shanghai Disneyland video that I did especially for you!

All the aerial pictures below are from Google Earth which recently added new satellite pictures of the construction site. We can see the entire construction site, including the Shanghaî Disneyland Lake; the land where the Shanghaî Disneyland five star hotel will be built at the bottom left of the lake; and of course the land where the park will be built soon! Note that the new satellite picture stops at the limit of the lake, so I have created a mix of old pictures and new ones, which also allows a before/after view.

Before we have a look at Google’s new photos, let’s take a look at this map which was cleverly done by Luke from Luke and the Temple of Fun website sometime ago. Luke put together the different maps available of the park, hotels, entertainment zone, etc. Keep these different places in mind as you view the photos.

To help you to locate where SDL will be from Shanghaî, I suggest that we first take a look at these pictures showing the park and Shanghaî on the left. The China Sea, in fact, is on the right of SDL, not so far away.

Now we are directly over Shanghaî Disneyland!

Let’s get closer! As you will see almost no buildings are built yet on the site, and these recent satellite pictures also give an idea of the work that remains to be done for SDL Imagineers and workers over the next two and a half years…

Here’s an aerial view of the land for SDL Magic Kingdom. The pale shot on the right is the most recent one, the one on the left shows the land before work on the ground began.

At the bottom left of the lake sits the land for the future Shanghaî Disneyland five star hotel, which will face SDL Magic Kingdom.

Another Google Earth view, this time looking towards SDL lake, and with the land for the park in the foreground.

These two pictures offer a closer view of the lake, the second one from the opposite angle.

The resort land view from another angle, with the SDL lake on the top right the land for the SDL Magic Kingdom.

And now, here is a “Soarin'” video that I created “flying” over the Google Earth views. Although it took me quite a while, I had fun doing it and I’m sure you will recognize the music. Also note that the fly-over is a slightly jerky – this is due to the fact that apparently Google Earth and Quicktime don’t play well together when one is recording the other. I hope that you will enjoy this short video anyway!


Pictures: copyright Google Earth

Video: copyright Disney and more

  • Gullywhumper

    This is great! I’ve been watching for signs of construction on the web. Thanks for doing this!

  • jcruise86

    Outstanding Micechat SDL update! THANK YOU!
    It will be interesting to see how quickly the Chinese build this.
    How is the air quality in that part of Shanghai?
    A 3D Soarin’ Over China is such a new brainer
    (as is Soarin Over France or Europe, Japan, and the other 49 states for the other Disney resorts)

    • jcruise86

      I meant “no brainer.”

      (I love Soarin’ and want to soar over other places in 3D with 3D aviator goggles–the goggles-shaped glasses are not my idea, btw. :))

  • 1WaltFan

    Great video! Thanks for that.

    I’m not familiar with the original site but it loos like there are quite a few rail lines being preserved and leading to strategic places. It looks like there are rail lines leading up to the hotel site and a station at the front of the park. Am I looking at that correctly? Are those rail lines or roads?

    • You are correct. There is a public rail component to the project, just like at Tokyo Disneyland, Hong Kong Disneyland and Disneyland Paris. Only the US parks are backward in respect to moving the public around without cars.

      • goofymon

        It costs money to ride the monorail in Tokyo if you are not a hotel guest, and they also have very ample parking for those that choose to drive. Whereas Wdw does have a free monorail and extensive bus system

  • CreepyMonkey

    I can’t wait to see how this all plays out. I find the idea of a mainland China Disney Park interesting, to say the least.

  • Haven

    I don’t know, I am having mixed feelings. It seems there are becoming so many Magic Kingdoms now that it is diluting the special attraction of it. It is like having a Best Buy in every city, eh. I seem to recall I had this same feeling when the Disney Stores were everywhere back in their height of the 1990’s. Once we finally got to Disneyland and went into the Emporium I felt like, oh I already saw this at home in our mall. I would prefer some newer park ideas, that’s why I believe DisneySea does so well. I am also quite fond of Animal Kingdom as the years have gone by. I mean how many times can we re-invent the castle? No wonder Walt was really focused on EPCOT for his Florida project rather than building another Magic Kingdom, he was ready to imagine in a new direction. All that said, I am sure it will still be lovely.